Aspen Words on Wednesday announced the faculty lineup for the Summer Words Writers Conference and Literary Festival, scheduled for June 16-21, 2019.
The conference includes juried and non-juried writing workshops, networking with publishing agents and editors and a readers’ retreat. New this year is a personal essay workshop taught by best-selling author Meghan Daum, a former longtime opinion columnist for The Los Angeles Times whose work also has appeared in such publications as The New Yorker and The Atlantic. The Summer Words’ offerings include a readers retreat focused on great travel writing, moderated by award-winning National Geographic photographer and filmmaker Pete McBride, a Roaring Fork Valley native.
Summer Words features afternoon panel discussions at The Gant (conference headquarters) and evening events at The Belly Up that are open to the public and provide an opportunity for locals and visitors to participate in the literary festivities.
In addition to Daum’s and McBride’s workshops, Summer Words includes juried fiction workshops taught by three acclaimed writers: Rumaan Alam, whose most recent novel, “That Kind of Mother,” was named a “most anticipated book of 2018” by The Boston Globe; Tom Barbash, author of four books as well as numerous reviews, essays and articles for McSweeney’s, The New York Times and other publications; and Susan Minot; an award-winning novelist, screenwriter and playwright.
Two writers will offer juried memoir workshops: Nick Flynn, author of three memoirs, including “Another Bullshit Night in Suck City,” which was made into the movie “Being Flynn,” starring Robert DeNiro; and Heather Harpham, whose best-selling book, “Happiness: The Crooked Little Road to Semi-Ever After,” was chosen for Reese Witherspoon’s book club. Laura Fraser, a best-selling author, editor and co-founder of publisher shebooks.net, will teach a juried book-editing workshop, and Tina Chang, the first female to be named the poet laureate of Brooklyn, will give a juried poetry workshop. Samrat Upadhyay, an author and professor in the creative writing program at Indiana University, will teach a non-juried writing workshop. Upadhyay was a finalist for the inaugural Aspen Words Literary Prize and is now serving as head judge during the award’s second year.
The Aspen Words benefit dinner, held during Summer Words on June 19 at the Hotel Jerome, will feature a guest speaker from the literary world, as well as the winner of the $35,000 Aspen Words Literary Prize, for a work of fiction with social impact. The Summer Words faculty, along with literary agents and editors, also will attend the dinner.
Aspen Words will award 10 fellowships to emerging writers demonstrating exceptional talent and promise. Candidates are nominated by writers, agents, editors and others associated with publishing. Fellows receive a full scholarship to Summer Words, including tuition, airfare, lodging and some meals.
The general application process for Summer Words opened Wednesday. Workshop descriptions and other details can be found at http://www.aspenwords.org/programs/summer-words/workshops-2/.